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  CSPAN    Capital News Today    News/Business. News.  

    August 2, 2013
    11:00 - 2:01am EDT  

.. we were paying ten to twenty times more if they were seen in a setting. if you pay too much for something, you'll get too much of it. that's what is happening in the health care system. the bulk of patients using drivingy rooms in america are
utilization. at the medicaid -- you leave a message no one calls you back. there are no appointment available. that's before the expansion. it's going get even worse as time goes forward. it's mapping out the claims on a map five years of data mapping out the home address of every resident and this is only nine square miles a small community. 6% of the city blocks are 10% of the line mass, 18% of the patients, 27% of the visits and 37% of the cost. it's just theroom room and hospital care. all over america they are living collected in buildings. many of which you are funding through state funds and federal funds. these are the two most expensive in the city. these are beautiful buildings with great management. 600 parents who are mostly dual eligible. these are disabled seniorsed at
$12 million in payment for the care to go bark over and over to the hospital. the building at the bottom. 300 patients a nursing home 300 patients had 15 million in payment to got hospital. we have mapped out data all over the cub now and found the same pattern in newark, specific buildings collecting high cost patients. in the state of maine with the help of the governorrer and his commissioner. we mapped out three counties and a rural state. it's hard live in the middle of no wrp nay didn't let us show use, but these are town hot spot of high cost complex patients that get down to the building level that, you know, we in even in a rural state are collecting high cost buildings. the question for us is a service delivery innovation. do we want to move the people around or bring care to them? so i want to start --
close with a really important announcement that the fountain of youth has been discovered it's not in florida. it's a very important study. this is a randomized control trial with 1700 patients over a ten-year period. we will never have a bigger study look this was the part of medicare chronic care demonstration. in many model it's a nurse going out every week or every other week in a very specific data-driven high fidelity model. visiting elderly medicare patients. they had 25% lower risk of death from getting a visit every week or every other week. over the ten-year period the mortality benefit didn't tamper off. so let me repeat 25% lower risk of death. you have to go way back in withat impact.y to find anything
when we give you drugs and treat your blood pressure. it's a few percentage point of impact. this is a stunning impact. you have to go back to the early day of polio, hiv meds to see any kind of impact of the magnitude. if it this were a pill you would be clam moring for. it the stock would tripled. the most interesting part of the study, the highest risk patients, the sick sees patient had a 50% reduction in the death rate having a nurse visit them every week or every other week. i think what the story tells you is we have an excess mortality in our broken, fragmented, and uncoordinated system of 50%. it a nurse visiting your grandmother is enough to drop the death rate by 50% something is profoundly wrong in today's american health care system. people are overwhelmed and confused. it had a highest risk of 33% risk in hospitalization and 22% icare.ion in total cst of
re is the sad part of the story, is that medicare as a demonstration project has tried to pull the plug on the project three times. most recently got so close to pulling the plug on it. they actually had to dismiss the patients and stop seeing them until there was an article "the washington post" calling attention to this. you know, sadly better care at lower cost doesn't have a constituency. medications, medical devices, hospital beds have constituencies. that are care doesn't have constituency. so we're in a block buster video moment in health care system. we have too many hospital beds in america. we have a bubble in hospital technology, we have to help the industry make a shift. there had to have ban moment in block buster video when a executive said people starting to rent video online. you can imagine the leadership saying no, no, we have internal datahwing thatthican
public every friday night spends 1 hour and 15 minutes in our store. you remember that? the story of america is that capitalism creates and destroys and that industries become obsolete. hospital beds are becoming obsolete. we don't need all the hospital beds we have. we have, you know, many of you are using your bonding authority to support and back up those underwrite the bonds. you are doing ribbon cutting for the facilities. every single crane that goes up. every ribbon cutting do you is an invisible tax on the employee benefit program. it's an invisible tax on every employee in the state. we have too much of this. i want to make a couple of suggestions to you that i believe this is all shifting to the state level. that you regulate these facilities, you regulate the providers, that everybody who needs to be here fix the
american health care system is here in this room. that governors can take the leadership, states can take the leaderships. all the state that inspire me are the most innovative things going on in health care happen at the state system. you can use your throip reframe the issue and start talking about this in different ways. keep it simple. what i see over and over we have carveout in the state-run system. you'll move to manage care and every different group constituency group says no, we don't want to go on manage car. we want to carve out. you carve out meds, you carve out wheelchair, you carve out all sorts of things. it's the point the staff can't run the program. you can't simultaneously run contracts, fee-for-service, manage care system. i would encourage you to be all in or all out. take a system and run it well. i think arizona is a well example of this. what arizona did, my understanding of it, they are
all in. everything is carved in. as a result they actively manage their contract. this is a procurement problem. if you want to privatize and move to manage care. you have to manage the contract. you can't be a passive purchaser. we need to rethink telephonic case management. nurses in cubicle aren't going to have any impact on the homeless people with no phones. we are spending a lot of must be all -- money all over the country that telephonic case management that don't work. there is no evidence for them. we have data locked in state government all over the health care system. look what happened from a grumpy family doctor got ahold of data. imagine what would happen if we free data across the country. there's nothing about the hipaa. if your lawyers tell you that hipaa won't tell you treat data. they are wrong, they are wrong. they are wrong. get different lawyers.
[laughter] we have to build path way and support innovation. where do i not knock on the door in state government if i have a good idea and proven it? it's hard to figure how to navigate state government when you have a good idea, you know, we need a clear pathway of how to test really stage idea, how to test mid-stage idea and bring them through government. it's really hard to figure out how to innovate and bring idea forward. the last recommendation to push accountability down to the community -- the reason that they did an amazing job turning around the new york city police department and the lowest crime rate in the country. me pushed accountability down. he made the presingt the unit of accountability, the dmom nateer and made the presibility captain the accountable manager. we don't have those in health care when there are failures we don't know how to hold
accountable. you can't hold the manage care plan accountable. they are too much away from the point of care. we have to rethink how we push accountability down to the community problem. the fixes will be local. we have to figure how. if you procure through manage care. you have to actively manage the contract so they are pushing accountability down to community level. if the doctors won't play nice with the hospital, won't place with the nursing home. thank you so much. i welcome the chance to take some questions. l [applause] >> okay. yep. sorry. first of all, doctor, i think it's about the most exciting presentation i have ever heard. we -- i went through a tough
legislative session where the hospital association threw everything they had in our effort to try to come with up healthier iowa plan. so i guess what your remarks resonated with me. and i -- that's one of the big challenges, i think, we have as governors how do we overcome the tremendous amount of money and clout and connections they have. you have some of the best leaders in the community serving on the hospital boards. they have tremendous amount of resources. they're non-profit but making a lot of money and building all kinds of buildings. i think what you said makes a lot of sense in one family practice physician put together a really strong case. i would be interested in getting more information. we got our health and wellness plan approved the bottom line is the hospital they want to expand
the medicaid, give us the must money, you know. i guess what you have given us is the indictment the present system hasn't worked. it's gotten worse and worse results. my goal is we want to become the healthiest state. how do we get there? i think you approach makes the most sense. i would like, if there's more you can add to it or obviously i would like you to come to iowa. [laughter] if you can do this in cam don, new jersey. i have been there and visited the campbell soup company there. i'll tell you, it's a tough place. i have great respect for what you have done. i would be interested, if you've got more insight. what governors can do to overcome the tremendous clout and power of the hospital lobby -- and my previous job as president of a medical school we had the same thing. we had a chronic care consortium, we finally get to
the point where we think we have a plan, then the hospitals would bail on us because they could see it was going to rehurt their bottom line. >>ic the first step is starting to talk honestly. there are great people that run hospitals. they in a tough spot. i feel an enormous amount of sympathy for the chief financial officer and ceo of hospital. we need publicly shift the dialogue. the most danger use thing in america is an empty hospital bed. it's an empty c.a.t scanner and knife, and card enologist -- cardiologist with an empty slot. that's the capacity bubble property. we create enormous amount of capacity that is a bubble, you know, the 178 percent -- 18% of our economy it health care, 11% is housing, and 7% is finance. what we have done is create an enormous health care bubble that has to pop at some point. at point a quarter of state
budget were psychiatric hospital. and your predecessor and other things decided to pull the plug. we popped the bubble and spent thirty years cleaning up the mess after ward. we have deinstitutional health care and have to have transitional money to do it. there are a couple of things to do. i would say, red i did, set, go, merge and consolidate. they're not going make it as tiny hospital. the next thing i would do is move toward global budgets a fast as model. it's the same as the hotel industry and the airline industry which is, you know, people in meds. it's a volume-based combine. they look at occupancy rate. it's not their fault. that's the game we set them up to play. we have to shift our language about this. health care is a messy market. it doesn't involve any of the law of the normal market. it's more akin to utility. so how many train lines between
two cities? how many tv companies do you want to compete to give you service? how many nicu do you want in iowa city? how many open-heart surgery suites to you? the problem is by allowing them to compete and forcing them to compete, what they are doing is dividing a limit market of brain tumor in to smaller groups. it turns out the best way to destroy quality health care is lower the numbers of the peed your you're -- proceed your doing. competition divides the marketplace up and fragments it to the point where delivery is much lower quality. this is much more akin to utility. you want one hospital doing amazing heart surgery and not five doing medium one. it's a monopoly problem. we don't have the right
language. you know, we failed in this in the railroads. we tried to have railroads compete against one another. we're going do that to the health care industry as well. >> safety net hospital in the inner-city. we have much different problems in suburban or mega hospitals. all of our major teaching hospitals in chicago have billion dollar construction programs. they have just about finished it. you have the safety -- which are, you know, having severe problems. how do you go to the motel for these local safety net hospital that really are in dire straits? >> let's be clear what it's telling us. if we scale that project up.
you would perhaps need third less hospital beds. it's like -- it's, you know, we have to buy down capacity and force mergers, force consolidation and begin to close institutions. the sooner we do that the better off we're. when they go under, nay go under haphazardrdly. they can't payroll. they call you up. the whole place is falling apart. people dying. it's a mess when you have haphazard closure. so, you know, the best thing you can do is push merger consolidation. if you do that and keep the existing system. price will go up. at the same time you center to move them toward different model that is not a click base model but other things. let think about there's a lot of discussion about health savings account bleat clear that the point of which the most expense ive you on the way to the hospital with your wife who is in labor at 29 weeks, and about
to have a premature baby. you are not a consumer. you on the way to the nicu with your recently born premature baby. you're on you're not opening consumer reports. health savings account are interesting and compelling idea. you talk about essentially healthier people or healthy people. the point at which you are the most expensive you are 85 and in the last two years of life. you are not a position to be consumer at that point. you can't make a decision. >> one of our biggest issues, i assume in all states is many counties spersely the rural economy and the largest employer is government and hospital. of course the argument the hospitals use if you hurt the hospital you cut employment. they present the jobs argument to us when unemployment is
high. we see a lot of consolidation of hospitals. the issue is they are cherry picking the consolidation based upon where the least amount of medicaid or medicare patient exist. they look for the paid the people on ?urn. they look for people who can pay the bill. how do you determine then where do you have the consolidation? the hospitals are using a business model to consolidate. not necessarily a community model or health care model. that's the -- i understand the business equation that's what it is. it's a business that the point in time. how do you deal with that disconnect between you tell us to consolidate. some will be left out because of the cherry picking. >> that's an interesting question. maryland solved the problem. we had a solution in 35 states over the country. when we had an economic downturn in the '70s.
it meant regardless whether you were medicaid, medicare, or commercially insured. you had the same payment when you went to the hospital. you have set a payment very low for medicaid and high for commercial. they do you want that kind of -- i love marketplaces. i love competition. do you want people fighting over commercially insured patients with brain tumor? is that the kind of competition we want? so maryland we deregulated hospital setting. the only state that has it is maryland. what it means is regardless of which payer you got door of the hospital and the hospital is getting paid the same amount. i think, you know, we don't want this stuff when we fighting up marketplaces by payers. it creates all of dynamic in a marketplace. so, you know, the other thing that would solve this is would be global budget.
stet for a region and oregon has done that, colorado has done that. beginning to do that and say this is your budget. you need to get your act together. >> it would be a regional -- so you can matias rodriguez inciarteically say this region of the state of delaware you currently spend you only go 1% a year. if you go above that you're not going get it. so you to fight among yourself to fix it. it's hard at the state level to compel people to play nice. at most you can set up a set of rules and say, you know, if you locally can't figure it out, then you have to go belly up. >> given what you said about the way the current incentive were it's not the hospital's fault. it's the game -- those are the rules that have been made. how do you get this in besides
forcing the consolidation? how do you get them to redesign, you know, if you do the -- [inaudible] which is great and you need the third less hospital beds. that's great for everybody except the hospital. so what is that strategy? >> it's going to create different jobs. instead of being a icu or floor nurse you become a visiting-home nurse. it shifts to a new category of jobs. instead of being in the hospital they'll be out of the hospital. instead of a hospital system being a giant hospital you have a bigger outpatient. that's economic shift. it's like, you know, at some point the steel industry needed to shift the model you can play a strong leadership role in your rhetoric and actions to sent send a signal to them to begin
shifting. when you go to the conferences they wouldn't degree with me. they would absolutely agree with everything i'm saying. they're talking among themselves about this. they have one foot in the fee for service model and get the it's a classic economic transition problem in a business model transition problem that you can be so helpful. your state employee benefit program could be a leader in this. your medicaid program could be a flared this. >> what happens if in the consolidation the beds can get consolidated are the lowest cost beds at the lowest cost hospital because the world where the strongest survive the strongest happen to be the one with the most commercial patients and higher rates. >> right. that's where the global budget or episode of care. right now we pay for every little piece in a piece mail way. for thirty days before your hip before the hospitalization and all the rehab after wards, six
weeks after wards we give you one price. but we have fragmented the payer market so much it's hard for one payer to take the lead. that's why deposit can play an important role. you say our medicaid plan is going play episode of care or a global budget. then the rest of the marketplace would follow. so you to pull a couple of levers at the same time and encourage consolidation but change how the payment happens. in the idea of global budgeting and you're saying region, obviously i'm from hawaii. it's the phenomena we have there of actually separate islands, and the majority of our population concentrated on one island versus others doesn't necessarily fit so easily. the rural urban construct does. how do you differentiate or -- maybe that's the wrong way to put. how do you incorporate in to what you're suggesting the idea of urban versus rural?
because the capacity in the rural areas where you have a very high percentage of older people in hi -- hawaii right now. i suspect in one variation or another. the number of people over the age of 60, 65 is increasing the number of those people who are living longer ask increasing. therefore the question of expenses at the latter part of life prolonging death rather than extending life. and the expenses associated with it are just exponential. how do you take in to account then the question of when you talk global budget and consolidation and -- you have to
transfer people the geographically in order to get basic services especially as we have an aging population. all the most interesting health care model are in the middle of nowhere. they are south central alaska when is a system it's the health system in pennsylvania. it's new jersey, you know, it's at the edge of the power structure. i think the answer to what you're describing is found in the data which is, you know, it's a fairly rural area. having a nurse visit every week or every other week was enough to keep people out of the hospital. and also begin to have the heard and the life discussions we don't have to ration health care automatic we have to do is deliver great health care every day that is truly
patient-centered and the rest will all take care of itself. you know, if you have good honest decent discussions with people, if you explain to them what is really going on and build relationship with them, all of these other discussions take care of themselves. could you discuss for a moment the relevance of hospice care in this context. >> extraordinary important. i think a big part of the outcome in the data set were the connection they made with hospice and having a long-term relationship with the whole family, having the time to sit at the kitchen table and build a relationship with someone and then with the family members to be able to have the discussions. you can't do it in ten minute busy care primary care office. we have a total failed model in highly -- meaningless ebb counter.
that's what w> does the hospicee your idea of the patient-centered health care which we're trying to i implement. i want to have that include patient-centered hospice. you don't necessarily have to go to hospice. why can't the hospice be in-home, if you will, visiting people. does make sense? >> i think hospice is that, you know, i think one of the most patient-centered service in america and the most brilliant service is hospice. lots and lots of loss piece patients die at home. that's the core mission of hospice. i think hospice is out in front of us. we don't use it. a lot of people don't get referred until a couple of days before death the doctors are uncomfortable having a hard discussion. you can't have a hard discussion in a ten-minute visit.
well -- [inaudible] with respect to what you showed. is there a difference between for-profit hospitals and not-for-profit hospital subpoena one getting in faster than another? >> you know, i think that's broader of question of for-profit and not-period of time. there's good behavior and misbehavior on both sides. there's an argument about managed care about fee for service. i don't care. someone has to manage it. somebody has to pay claims. i don't care who does it. do it well. somebody has to run the hospital. i don't care who does it. do it well. i think we had the wrong argument all along. you can make any system work if you have the right expectations, if you manage it well, if you have transparency of data, public reporting of data.
it doesn't seem that for-profit are taking a lead consolidation currently. >> i think they see it through the trees. and, you know, local hospitals have local boards, it's local business people, it's local attorneys and no one wants to give up local control. the problem is these tiny little hospitals don't have the layer of professional management and professionalism on the board to run a complicated hospital. when i go around the country, the very large systems i interact with are doing incredible book. you can't do it until you get to a certain size and scale. >>. >> can you give us a -- help move the ball down the field. you think about the example you use about block buster or netflix or whatever. consumers ultimately made that choice as to whether or not to spend that hour or fifteen minute and figure out how to do it some other way. if it required a little work.
it seems like we talk about the business and system and whatnot. ultimate mayly you're going need consumers to be empowered inside the system to help drive discussion making to the right place. what sort of language or discussion i think regardless of the level some of the most incredibly unempowered consumers in the world are people are sick or hurt. everybody had that. wait in long lines or decide which doctor to see or the therapist or the various work around you talk about before that we use. what sort of language do you think can be empowering and motivating to individuals that will assist us in getting the market driven kind of solutions we are talking about. >> i'm going say a sad thing. it's skepticism. receipt -- let my say why. there's a famous study that look
at knee surgery. you gate scope on the knee. it's 0 to 50 overweight and had swelling for a couple of weeks. they so see the primary care provider. they show wear and tear on the knee. they finally did a study to find out where they put a scope in and do a trim onthe cart religious works. what they did is called a -- you were randomized to have the usual procedure or the scope where they put it in and take it out and wake up. you have no idea which group they are in. they got better at the exact same rate. we do 650,000 of those a year. what happened is medicare set a high price for it. and everyone race to do it. then we build capacity, we built or to do it. we put up billboards and ran out of sick people. then we worked down the continuum to less and less sick
people. it was a brilliant thing. the fact we can put a scope in and repair your knee is incredible. it works if you are an athlete 25e7b. if you are 250 pounds, and 45 years old it doesn't work. so the reason people get better if i took any of you out of work for twelve weeks, put you in physical therapy and told everyone your house to take care of you you would be healthier. that's why they get better. [laughter] there are examples across the health care system of stuff we're doing that doesn't work and hurts people. there's a famous took looking at people's hearts. if you have a acute heart attack it's a miracle. they did a study to randomize to a incident or medication management, controlling your blood pressure and cost roll. they got better at the same rate. what happened is we incidented heart attack and ran outof
heart attacks. started we overpaid for the local cardiologist group. now they are on board. fill the beds. so it's the conundrum where the most amazing health care system in the world. we codo the school stuff for people. we are doing too much unnecessarily. >> you hit on a issue that i think a lot of us thought about is unnecessary procedure. i believe that probably doctors like yourself for the most trusted people in our communities. everybody looking to a doctor. and you say take care of me. i don't feel good. i have a pain there. tell me what to do.
we have too many scopes being done on knees. too many history recollect me. we have doctors doing preventative medicine because of legal issues and liability concerns. how can we get to a point where the doctors doing the right thing for the right reason not just in the -- i'll be careful and give them another procedure and get paid. that's a concern that somehow with profit, not for profit. can we trust the doctors and hospitals do do the roorgt thing for me in my health as opposed to motivated by something else? i hate to say it. we destroyed the american health care profession and the professionalism has eroded like many field in america.
there's a committee, for everything in health care there are about 15,000 health care in medicare. they make recommending how the price for medicare should work. and 90 percent of the time medicare has taken their recommendation. it's a committee of doctors setting their own prices. and the codes attached to the prices are copyrighted and trademarked by the -- you can't download that and even look at it. you have to pay for it. the way that medicare and our country pays for the doctor bills is copyrighted and trademark by the trade association that set its own prices. that's a stunning thing. it you look around the room there's three primary care doctor and the rest are specialists. they get outvoted every time.
they set a very high price if you cut -- a low price if you talk to anyone. and all over the health care system the insurers negotiate a percent off the schedule. when you negotiate you say i want 125% of medicare fees they say no we give you 110%. the bias built in to the system is promulgated everywhere and it go back to the origin of medicare to negotiate and buy off they agree to usual and -- you can correct it in the medicaid system, your employee health plan system. you can begin to send a signal to the federal government that you not tolerate the biases that are built to the schedulen [inaudible]
[inaudible] so many of our physicians and hospitals, you know, they practice protective medicine because they're afraid all the time of -- they don't do something and don't run a test. if they don't take advantage of everything they've been taught well, we have those lawsuits coming upon them. what role does tort reform play in to all of this? >> we have a perfect study in which 50 state, you can track health costs. some states like texas set very severe caps. they haven't seen lower trend lines because they set the cap. it's absolutely true that doctors practice defensive medicine. it's true the tort system doesn't work. it's true we need changes. it's all true. it won't fix the terrorist trends. they because of it's because of a rationality in the system. it's because of delivering too many of the wrong kinds of social security.
yo lot of ama's answer to this and physician's answer is tort reform. you can say, you know, yes, you are right the tort system needs to be fixed. it's not the answer to the cost trends. >> thank you, doctor. that was incredibly interesting. [applause] i want to ask our executive director to give us an update on the association and assistanting state to control health costs while maintaining quality. >> thank you we're trying to emulate what jeff it doing. we have an agreement with jeff trying to utilize his technique. we have awarded seven states project to see if we can take some of the technique jeff and his colleagues have developed and apply them to a state.
it it see if it it can replicated and scaled up. we think it might work. we're working with stat and pieces of what jeff has done that will make available to everyone. thing like software to identify the most expensive patient. we can provide that to you for free. we're looking at other pieces of this that we can replicate and distribute as well. work force. we have mentioned how much we are working on work force. many of the medical personnel. we don't really have a definition what the community medical worker is. we don't have a training program that is recognized. we don't have a certification. there are things to be able to replicate or at least some of these tech techniques. we're also working on payment system reform. what cousin it take to gather the payment together the way jeff has done from various part of the piece of the system to be
able to then repartition them. that blings up an issue we haven't often dealt with which was antitrust. ironic but nonetheless true they're not -- competing for market share. yet the department -- they were interested in what they were doing. regulations were written, and the fdc danned to look at them. as we get consolidation, whether you think of it as commercial population and monopoly -- antitrust will become a more important issue across the health care system. we try to work them to see if we can get some clarence and guidance hue they will think of these projects. we are going work with the
number of state to see if what question do to replicate jeff's work and have part of the system we can offer to all of you as we move along. part of the answer the governor, to your question of jeff come to iowa, i'm not sure we can, but we can. we would like to do that. we're going duplicating this. we are also about to release contracting option. much of what jeff talked about we can replicate in contract whether it's for the medicaid patient or employees and retiree. it looks like this. it's about eight chapter. you can employ to require transparency or look at other aspect jeff mentioned. data reporting of course those kinds of thing. we have a couple of contract that have much of this already. arizona i think is one. tennessee is another. so there will be full contract as well if you look ander to
them award. -- apart. and you don't need to do it by regulation. do you a fair amount by managing contracts. question are also doing work in specific health area. we have been working and will don't see how we can do better. a you all know, most half of the country are financed by medicaid. you have a big interest in financially and health concerns how it fairs in your state. we continue to work on that as well. we have struck a deal with the institute of medicine that begin holding statewide retreats. the basic notion is that they will bring to a state or get within the state of the health care side of the state and use governors can bring the political side of the state.
and spend weekend in the room and talk about the barrier in your state in true reform and try to get a better sense of the answer to five or -- we're not going answer the question for sure. we might if we're lucky. the real prospect what the data needs are and the questions are. we hope to be able to jump start for some of the reforms. the parallel what we're doing with other things. our test case is going to be state of wisconsin. in october with the first retreat here. if any of you know, harvey who runs is the oim is enthusiasm. he saidlet do ten states. i saidlet do one. let see how it works. i anticipate it will be well worth replicating. we get back to you whether you like to try to do the exercise in the state or not. we work from the top down to the some of the things jeff every
day to see how we can replicate the work and expand it and how to make available more tools, more knowledge of how to reform the health care system. you all have data and medicaid data. if not you should get it. you have data on the employee population. you have largest purchasers of health care for many of you in the state. you can move a lot of material around. states have many, many lever. you control the entire supply of health care. you have antitrust power and purchasing power and regular regulatory power. and by deploying those in good way you can change the system. we're hopeful to be to be help. we have 2 or 25 of your governor's health advisers in washington earlier this week to begin getting them to talk to each other as we.
it was the first time we had the health advisers together. and begun the discussions, of course, in sharing what they're working on. it was important we need learn what we might have to offer them and important for them to tell us what you need. we may not have guessed right in some cased. but i think if we can take successful experiment, if you let me call it that, and test them other places and see how we can opt them to your state and local health practices. we can begin, i think, can -- some of you already testing other model. i think we'll have other models to offer as well we can try to help you test. the whole point of the health care exercise is you have a lot to do with it, and if you will decide to do so, we're happy to help you try to -- as jeff said, governors have a lot of say over health care lower in their state. we stand ready to help you. >> thank you very much. we are going to be in nashville
next summer for the 2014 summer meeting. i'm going ask the governor to come up and there he is. i'll make a deal. if you will come nashville. i promise not sing now or then. [laughter] [applause] if you heard me sing you should have clapped louder. we are excited to invite you to nashville 2014. they will will be there next summer and everybody knows nashville is music city. we intend to entertain you appropriately. we'll got mother church of the country music hall of fame. nashville is actually so much more. they actually just recognized them of five cities you should go in the world before you die. the next closest is paris. i suggest you come to nashville now. but bonn appetite named it to
the south tastiest and coolest city. rolling san stone magazine named it i can promise you you have a wonderful visit in nashville. we have a lot of the discussion we just had. more hospital beds are managed out of nashville than any other city in the u.s. you can decide for yourself if the impact on policy. we also make $300 million mm every day and sell jack danielles along the way. we have a lot to entertain you. for those who would love to and check out the politic and some of our democratic -- we're going have dinner one might. andrew jackson, maybe the founder of democratic party is home and there will be two things that republican or democrat will reassure all of us that nothing has changed. it's home contains more items of his personal effect than any
other presidential home including the newspaper that he marked up every night. it will give you great reassurance to know that politician view of the media. his remarks are fairly blunt. i'll put it that way. the second thing is you can hear about jackson and those who thinks who politic recently turned nasty when jackson was in the last day to his home and someone interviewed him and said do you have any regret? and they were thinking it was his chance to be a states march. because he's long since retired from the presidency in the last day in his life. he said i wish i shot call hon and hang clay. we promise you a fun and entertaining and educational time. we look forward to see you next july in nashville. thank you. [applause]
>> did you say burr -- bourbon and mm? [laughter] we take minute to recognize the fellow -- we have a wonderful relationship our fellow and very much appreciate their deployment nga and working with all of us. and as many much you this program facilities the exchange of the idea. in -- partner in term of approving public policy, and we want to take this opportunity to recognize a few of them. the center for best practice and going help me recognize some of our long standing company. this year actually marks the 25th anniversary of the corporate fellow program. the first one back in 1988. back then were there about dozen companies. today there more than 100. one of the company has been a
member since the very beginning. today we recognize a founding member of the nga corporate fellow program that is a, tt. we are appreciative of the partnership over the many years. [applause] i'm doing to ask wayne of at&t to please join us here. now you can applaud. [applause] had in is an awesome picture. [inaudible conversations] all right. that's great.
[laughter] thank you. [applause] we. to recognize a few companies for twenty years of service. the first is -- come on up. [applause] there are a couple of companies we want to acknowledge that wouldn't be with us. one is ford motor company. the other is fmc. we are appreciative of them as well. i know that all of the governors join me in expressing our gratitude to them. [applause] that concludes our session.
committee meetings are starting soon. we look forward to seeing you all over the next few days. thank you very much. [inaudible conversations]
[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
well, have more from the national governor's association summer meeting in milwaukee tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. eastern with transportation secretary anthony fox and house transportation committee bill shuster. we talk about infrastructure needs in states across the country. later in the day at 2:30 eastern a discussion about how states are dealing with the global economy. that will be hosted by the chair of the national gerch's association. governor's jack and mary fallon. you can watch those of live tomorrow on c-span. acting irs commissioner was on capitol hill today. he answered questions at the house oversight subcommittee hearing about increases in identity theft tax fraud cases. during that hearing, california congressman darrell issa, the chairman of the full oversight committee used his ln
questioning to discuss the ongoing investigation in to the irs targeting of political groups. here is a portion of that exchange. >> i have some frustration i'm bringing to you today. as you know, a number of months ago, the president made it clear that the behavior that occurred in isolated basis in cincinnati was unacceptable. he charged that we would get to the bottom of it. we have gotten to the fact it's not isolated to cincinnati as was said, it's not isolated to washington, and it goes to your chief council's office. as we go to do our discovery, that's where rub is. you promised us full cooperation and yet the office of chief council has 70 attorneys. they are delivering four documents a day per attorney to us. they look like this.
in my tiny pretty it said 6102. the lawyers working on documents four pages a day, per lawyer, are you going tell me that this is in fact a minimal redaction as required by law? >> well, there a couple of statements i would like to make, if i could. >> i would like your answers, please. >> the lawyers take very seriously their legal responsibility to redact information under the law to redact information that is specific to a individual taxpayer. all such information bottom line, mr. chairman, all such information whether redacted or unredacted is delivered to this congress. it's delivered -- >> you've delivered less than 1%, excuse me, for standing. i have to get over your stack. you have delivered less than 1% of the documents --
actually to the ways means committee. >> i agree with that conclusion. >> i'm afraid that's what chairman camp put to. >> i disagree with that. if i'm allowed to explain. >> no. [inaudible conversations] here is my question to you, we produced, i believe 63 search terms. you added some search terms. i'm not disagreeing your adding for progressive and looking for progressive. that's fine. i want more not less. you came up with this that it added up to a total of 80 search terms and unilateral i are, your people, the office of chief council reduced it to a dozen. they are not searching on the term we asked for. our request is for all information related to this when you eliminate search terms you are obstructing us by limiting the scope of discovery. do you understand that? i do. i agree with the premise of your
question and the facts you're offering. >> did your people limit the search terms below the search terms that are delivered actually in your response letter today if you looked. >> we are prioritizing searches in order get more documents more quickly. the amount of document production has been -- it doesn't mean we eliminated search term permanently. it means we're making modification. >> that's not your call, mr. werfel. let go in to a little quick detail. what is interesting about the page, i understand why you removed taxpayer specific. it's also, the information is being delivered without hiders. the if names were there i steil wouldn't know what the numbers are. somebody deliberately printed out information or created digital in which they stripped out the data so you know what the column are. even mr. connelly would say it
opportunity look like a spread sheet he normally had. it says on top. additionally, we asked you for information. we set the priority, if you're going slow roll us. you are slow rolling us. >> that's not true. >> mr. werfel, you frustrated this committee. you promise to do things and you're not. the office of chief council as far as we know made the decision to limit search terms. is that correct or did you? i'm working together with the office of cheech counsel. we are not limiting the search term in a permanent way. we are prioritize to get the most -- >> if i can make a point. >> please. i can unanimous consent for additional four minute. >> mr. chairman i'll gladly give it provided that the democratic side of the aisle be allowed to respond given the fact we are not off topic with respect to this hearing. i rpt the wish and the prerogative of the chairman to usethe opportunity to query him
on another matter. i respect that. i would like an opportunity opportunity to respond. >> i would grant the full committee chair at that time. we will grant additional time to the minority. >> i i thank the chairman for his graciousness. >> mr. werfel. let's go through the number. >> i was about to -- >> no. i've been granted additional time. >> the democrats seem to be carrying your water. >> i think it's important facts for me to get out. >> yes, they are important facts to get out. you are obstructing them. >> i am not. that's not true. >> so now -- >> and not supported. >> mr. werfel, apparently you were put in by the administration to run cover until somebody new would come in. it's my time and i'm going explain to you what the committee has found.
they delivered 12u it's over 1200 of them. they are completely useful. your interpretation of 6102 is so broad you are not delivering meanful -- we are prioritized the discovery. low -- loiser lerner who attempted to take a fifth before the committee. we -- we asked for response with the white house. let understand something. it better not include 6103. redaction is not appropriate. we are not covered by the privacy act. if would be communications way outside. additionally your people have chosen to redact according to them private information. you don't have the right to have
private communications. on government time and commitment. if laos learn enthey are not if the stiff 03 and there we expect them to be immediately referred for criminal pings. you can't have private conversations and release 6103. that of course would be wrong. as we go through the discovery and find far excess redacting no question at all, slow rolling discovery limiting search term. you may call it prioritizing. we're not prioritizing as we need them. it's my expectations we should have received communication from the white house. we should have received communication between anyone conducting non6103 business. we should have already received lois lerner's entire packet. these are not my expectations. these are the american people's expectations. your speed of delivery is such that you will be long gone. the president will be long
gone. lois learner will have retired before we receive a sufficient amount of information to be meaningful i asked for you information you're not forthcoming. your own office appear to be clearly comprised. the lawyers there are included in this investigation. the communications to and from the lawyers clearly mean that the air force -- officer has been comprised. i will send a subpoena to our expectations is that the tissue i are department will take over the delivery of dmowment a timely fashion. use such attorney as they may see fit they believe are not comprised. and i would ask you to immediately instruct chief council -- counsel may not any longer be
part of the decision making. only attorneys not part of the investigation. and quiet frankly. i'm deeply disappointed. it was my expectations with our past relationship and your past work that you would come in not just wanting to be a caretaker but get to the bottom of this. and the president began calling this scandal phony. secretary lew was calling it phony. what i can't understand is how you can think the american people would accept this as phony. this is a real information. we need real discovery. if the documents need to be redacted, by definition you have no reason to deliver them. if you can only deliver me blank pages completely blank pages. deliver them to the other committee. i'll tell you one thing, as these pages, which will almost impossible to figure out where they came fro mare going through
the ways & means committee. you better hope, you better really hope we don't find something that shouldn't have been redacted. we expect we will. more over, i'm sad to see you go. i thought you could doing? i'm sad to have to issue a subpoena. that's not whey thought we were going have. we didn't enter the conversation thinking it was a grand conspiracy. my democratic friends are convinced that progressives were targeted even though your own inspector general said he found no evidence. he found evidence of other groups generally called tea party groups having been targeted. we don't want to find only one side. we want to find anyone who is targeted. we want to hold people responsible. today lois lerner is being given full pay and not held accountable. our job is to find out everyone should be held accountable and make sure the american people
can trust this will not happen again. because i believe that if we are thwarted this investigation it will become a pattern of behavior whether by the chief exec executive of the quite or simply individuals who have power within bureaucracy such as the irs, the epa, osha and the like. >> a notion we're impeding or obstructing is completely false. in fact the opposite is true. we are involved in a thorough, comprehensive, effort to fully cooperate with all the congressional committees that are asking questions and asking for witnesses and documents. there's substantial fact and evidence that demonstrate our full cooperation. keep in mind, i've been in for nine weeks. the process is moving forward and getting better and more effective at producing this discovery on a data to day basis. i have more than 100 employees working on the document request that chairman issa raised a concern about.
it includes 70 attorneys full time to review document. we produce them on a weekly rolling basis inspect committee has over 16 -- as of today will have over 16,000 pages of documents that have been -- delivered. it's important make sure that the public and the american people understand is that all of these documents are being produced to congress. we operate within legal constraint in term what we can deliver to who and when. you can see all the hearing with danielle we're tell -- werfel in our video library at c-span.org. diswhrncht coming up tonight a senate foreign relation hearing that looks at way to improve --
>> what are the milestone year for first lady through history? >> i would say certainly mrs. adams. her period. the first to live in the white house was opinionated and bright lady. capable lady. on a more social side. dolley madison and the burning of the house. you 0 ere. >> i would take it up from there
today the state department issued a worldwide travel alert focused on region in the middle east and north africa. after the department received information that al qaeda could be planning attack throughout the month of august. as a precaution, the state department announced it will be closing as many as 21 embassy and consulate in countries such as iraq, egypt, libya, saudi arabia, afghanistan, and yemen. effective sunday. the twrafl alert itself remains in effect until the end of the month.
it will come to order. mission abreed and the safety of our foreign service personnel.sy i've introduced name for who. gave their life and service ofov the nation in benghazi on september 11th.b the lessons we have learned from the tragedies we have learned
from implement of the broader issue we will increasingly facen nn the 21st century.ce and it will require our full to prevent another tragedy in thety future. i after benghazi, the our may 29 recommendations to state andtte congress while we must do ourour part in overseeing state implementation we must also do o our part to provide the resources and necessary authorization to ensure fulln. implementation. mu we must make whatever they areoa -- we must strike the proper the p
balance between sealing offl vulnerability in high threatat area and continuing to conduct vigorous and effective diplomact lhat serves the nationalective p interest.that ser the fact is we can never have absolute security in an increasingly dangerous worldld unless we see sale our diplomat n steal tank. ouity aon our he day, this is not an either/or choice. we need to address the construction of new embassy that meet accident security needs and cowhat we can to ensure existing high-risk post we need our people to represent our interest and new construction is not an option. they stated it clearly. i quote, the solution requireses a more serious and sustained commitment from congress to support state department needs which in total institute a small percentage both of the full
national bucket and that spent for national security. one overall conclusion in this report is that congress must do its part to meet the challenge it and provide necessary resources to the state department to address security risk and meet mission impartive. the bill i introdpiewsed is part of the solution it's serious and sustained commitment that takes lesson escaped with have learned and turns them in to action. as i said total security is next to impossible. our diplomats cannot encase nems stone fortreats. it's clearly not an option. so the solution must be multifaceted. it must include enhanced physical security around our embassy. and ensure that our diplomat are equipped with the language skills and security training necessary to keep them safe when they come out from behind the embassy wall. it also requires us to ensure that the persons protecting our missions are not selected simply because they are the cheapest
available force. where conditions require enhanced security. this bill gives state additional flexibility to contract guard forces based on the best value rather than the lowest bidder. it means upholding people accountable when an employee exhibits unsatisfactory leadership that has serious security consequences, the secretary must have the ability to act. this bill gives secretary greater flexibility in disciplinary action in the future. it authorizes funding for key -- and including embassy security and construction, arabic language training, construction of a foreign affairs security training center to consolidate and expand security training operation for state department personnel. so that instead of piecing together our training at facilities up-and-down the east coast, we stream line them in a single facility that can provide
comprehensive training more people. lastly the bill requires detailed report from the department on the progress and implementing all of the recommendations made by the accountability review board. specifically requires the identification of and security of high-risk and high threat facilitity. at the end of the day if we fail to act and address these issues there will be another incident. a responsibility is ours. and the failure to act will be ours as well. it's a time for solutions. with that, let me turn to my distinguished ranking colleague who has worked with us to have the hearing senator corker for the opening statement. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you for your effort to focus on the issue of embassy security, and candidly the way you conduct our efforts here in foreign relations and bipartisan
way. it's much appreciated. i want to thank the state department for bringing forth the kind of witnesses that, you know, carry the weight on this issue that matters to all of us. thank you both for being here. we have a procedural issue occurring at 11:00 that is semi important. i might be stepping in and out on the phone before the net vote. i want to thank for being here. i know, our officers have been in contact with you. let me extrees a couple of concerns. .net imagine and we know especially after what happened in libya, it just highlights the threat that they are under. we know the threat are taking place all over the world. i know, that the state department has requested funding for numbers of new facilities that take many, many years to build. yet at the same time i know we have people today where we just
came from or general came from that are under a lot of occur res now and candidly, you know, have some security issues. so i do hope as we move along we'll figure out a way to balance between some of the longer term projects that are taking places that are not under very serious threat with some of the short term needs we have. i know, there's some focus on building a training facilitying with which i know is very companyive and we're aware there's way of doing that training in ways that don't require spending hundreds of billions of dollars to build. i hope we'll move along in a appropriated way. i don't want to rehash the past. i think that chairman knows we have tried to move away from some of the things that happened in the past. i would like for somebody to explain to me at some point we did have the arb. i know, we have four employees that were involved in, you know,
some reporting on the arbs. they're still on paid leave and nothing has occurred. and i would like at some point understand how we bring closure to that issue, but, again, thank you for being here. thank you for your sf to our country. i hope in a bipartisan way we'll move ahead in a way that certainly does the immediate things that are necessary to make sure that our foreign service officers are safe. thank you. >> thank you. >> i'm pleased to introduce bill miller. a wls have gregory star, the acting assistant secretary of the diplomatic security service. these two officials sit the an ex nexus of policy management discussion. we look forward to hearing their perspective on the legislation and the best way to secure the embassy and keep the personnel as safe as possible. with our thanks, both of you
have for being here. we'll begin with your opening statements. your full statements will be included in the record. we ask you to sin these around five minutes or so so we can have member engage in a dialogue . >> thank you, mr. chairman. ranking member corker. i want to thank you for your invitation to appear here before you today to discuss the future of embassy and diplomatic security. we appreciate and share your commitment to enhanced security. as evidenced in the recently introduced chris steven embassy security and protection act of 2013. the attack on the u.s. diplomatic facility last september and subsequent attacks this year as well, against diplomatic facilities and personnel remind us every day that the world is a dangerous place for diplomacy. unfortunately, this is nothing new. being on the front lines of u.s. national security has always
been inherently risky. however, we strive to mitt mitigate this risk to the maximum extent possible. the fact remain we will not even with the most willing and capable government partner as we have in many places around the world we will not stop terrorists or extremists from attacking us in every instance. rather we must carefully balance this risk against the value of pursuing our national interest in these various countries. we have learned some very hard and painful lessons out of benghazi. we are already acting on those lessons. the state department carries on the business of the american government and the people in 284 locations, many in challenging security environments where key u.s. national security interests are at stake. every day the department works to protect our people and
missions by constantly assessing threats and security posture overseas. the bureau of diplomatic security advances american interests and foreign policy by protecting people, property, and information. we do this by maintaining a security program that analyze the threat, managing the security situation, and mitigating the risks. they constantly researches, monitor and analyzes threat against american or diplomatic facility and u.s. diplomatic personnel. this information along with trend analysis and case study of political violence, terrorist acts, and crime form the basis of the threat assessment that we use that are provided to department senior managers to support the operational and policy decision making process. from this analysis, we determine what additional security measures, whether they be short term or long-term, should be
taken to mitigate the potential threat against our diplomatic asset. from analysis in washington, d.c., monitoring our threat to the regional security officers abroad, managing the security programs at the posts, we strive to provide the most secure platform for conducting american diplomacy. building on the recommendations of the independent benghazi accountability review board, the interagency assessment team that were sent out, and our own considerable experience and expertise, the department is diligently working to improve the way we protect our diplomat not only at our highest threat posts but all of our facilities around the world. thank you in large part your support in 2014 continuing resolution, progress is well underway. pursuant to the recommendations of the independent benghazi arb we are training more u.s. foreign affair community
personnel to deal with high-threat, and high-risk environment through our foreign affairs cowrpt threat course. we're expanding the duration of ds high threat tactical training courses and incorporating element of the training to the other ds courses so that regardless of a diplomatic security special agent assignment. we have a flexible overseas. we're hiring 150 new security professionals and next fiscal year. ..
the pure i are of dip malt irk and protecting our people will never be done. we take great pride in our accomplishments we apply the lessons learned, and we look forward to working can
consolidion on embassy security. i recognize that my opening remarks are brief because i wanted to allow plenty of times for questions to answer your specific questions. i'm be glad to take those questions have you have heard my ti colleague bill miller.se questnr he'll provide his remarkses at o this time thank you, mr. s chairman. >> good morning, chairman men po then at the black blank thank i too appreciate and share yourk commitment to enhancing embassyy security as evidenced by your recently introduced chris stevens, sean smith, bill b and ecurity and personal security of 2013. it has been a concern since inception of embassy security almost 100 years ago. to counter these global threats
come in, the office of the chief special agent was formed in 1916. it was not, however until 1985 at the same time is preparing for service to the u.s. government and the mission and vision was part of the team that i particularly wanted to join. in 1987, i became a special agent and since then i have devoted my 26 year career to fulfilling the mission to provide a safe and secure environment for the conduct of foreign policy.
i have manage security programs is a regional security officer in iraq and pakistan and jerusalem and philippines and indonesia. to demonstrate the depth of my experience and not of special agent come i would like to highlight a few of my accomplishments. i have dealt daily with possible terrorist acts that have impacted the lives of americans to include the kidnapping of americans in the philippines as well as participating in the capture of one of the main perpetrators of the 1993 world trade center bombing. when the united states returned in 2003, i was asked to serve as the first officer and manage the environment as we reestablish our diplomatic presence. most recently overseas i was the turn tendering be arab spring.
making to ensure that we have adequate security resources in egypt. after the september 2012 attacks , the department created the diplomatic security secretary of state for high-threat posts, also known as htp. the departments are diplomatic missions worldwide. churning which posts are designated as high-threat and high risk and are now 27 posts. the high-threat protection directive that i lead overseas
in these high-threat poster on the world coordinate strategic and operational planning and drive innovation across a broad spectrum of the ds missions and responsibilities and we continue to work together with the regional bureaus to ensure that everyone has visibility of the security threats at her post. as the deputy secretary for htp, i am responsible for mitigating the security threats as well as directing resource requirements at high diplomatic missions. i closely follow developments and assess our security posture. as you have said, we can never truly eliminate all of the risks
facing our dedicated personnel working overseas to advance u.s. interests. however, is the department has set in place the highest priority on the security of our personal and have continued to take the steps necessary i would like to thank you again for the opportunity to appear before the committee today and discuss the security. i am available to answer any of your questions. >> thank you both for your testimony. you know, i have heard from some of my colleagues that suggest that what we need is this greater oversight of state but we don't need any money. the question is, can you under the existing budget, with no additional revenues, protect throughout the world the higher
risk of lives of those who are assigned to the diplomatic corps representing us worldwide. >> senator, thank you for going right to the heart of what is really of importance to us in many ways, giving us the resources to address this. this proposal gives us a proper level of resources that we can utilize effectively now. we have this budget request that rolls both of these pots of money into our request as well.
i believe that that amount of money gives us the ability to move forward and do the things that we need to do. the second part of that question is as all of us have mentioned, we cannot guarantee that we are going to protect every single person. but that level of funding and resources combined with the types of actions that we are taking gives us a level of confidence that we have adequate and appropriate resources to address the types of threats that we need to address we are going to prioritize across the board where we put our resources >> what i am trying to get at is that if i zeroed out your
account, what would you do? >> well -- >> if i zeroed out, if you didn't roll over this part of the congress, what would you do? >> we would prioritize very heavily. >> understanding the context of security. secondly, if i cut it in half, what would you do? >> i think that that would cause a reassessment of where we could actually put people. i don't think that we would be a able to stay in the high-threat locations where the u.s. national interests are most important. this is current funding for the cost sharing program.
which the president's fiscal year 14 budget has requested this amount. it wasn't just a number from the sky. it was based upon an analysis from the accountability review board about what your challenges are and what your needs are and what you can realistically administer over a period of time from a security standpoint, do you have a sense of how many new facilities are needed? particularly in high-threat and high-risk locations? >> sera, within the high-threat list, we have a certain amount of them that have the new facilities. but there are still about 15 facilities that we do not have the post type of buildings. there are other places where we don't haose facilities in
the past 13 years. over those 30 years we have constructed these facilities from 1988 through 1982. we are about 110 out of 175 facilities that we would like to replace diligently and have their proper level of standoff that is mandated and have a level of protection that we seek for people overseas. >> let me ask you.
what is a security upgrade versus a new facility? >> it is done in many places around the world and we don't have facilities that have setbacks. we cannot retrofit many of our buildings to withstand blasts or direct attack without the ability to move to a new location in the choir sat back and built facility that meets the blast standards. >> where new construction is not an option because of the inability to either secure land or find a suitable location or for other reasons, how does the department seek to mitigate less high-threat facilities? >> many of those locations we have withdrawn for our families. we have cut down and moved our staffing levels to only the personal that we absolutely need. we have worked closely with host governments and asked them to closer streets around our embassies that we can try to maintain some setback. many of them have done that for several years. it also looked was eventually to
move our facility so they can reopen the streets. we work closely and training of personnel and then trying to train them with capabilities. the real one where we are really faced with facilities that don't meet security standards, we work with the host government to try to increase our setback and hard in the facilities and make sure that we have only the people necessary at the post that we need. >> okay, so to recap, money is a consideration here in terms of your ability to say to this committee that we are doing as best as we can to secure our people around the globe. >> i cannot say it better. >> finally when when when we
look at him and his deconstruction, i understand it is prioritized on the basis of securities. is that a correct statement or an incorrect statement? >> the primary driver is security. we provide a list of the highest priorities. within that list, as we understand it, obtaining real estate and property deals in and building facilities are long-range and very difficult. we have certain flexibility, but we have reinforced most recently that we want them to really look at the highest threat posed on the high-threat list and determine whether or not we can make significant progress on them. i can give you one example, sir. after 30 years of trying to find land for a new facility to start the construction, we believe we are going to be successful next couple in the next couple of years. and it looks like we have a land deal and it looks like we will be able to actually replace facility in beirut that we have been trying to replace for many years. >> good. for those of us that are not
acronym profession, what does it mean? >> the office of overseas building. >> thank you both for coming here. when we have a hearing come in the first hearing with the leadership that put forth this and immediately they were talking about this, it seemed like whenever there was a problem, that was the first place that we would go. i understand that we may need to look at that. at the same time as we look at the plans, i know you currently have 1.4 billion and you have asked for 800 million more. and i see that we are spending a huge amount of money on facilities. even in places where we have construction underway. the new embassy won't be ready for another six years.
at the same time, this is a lot of money that is being spent in places and apparently security issues are not necessarily urgent like we haven't some of the places that i mentioned earlier, in pakistan and sudan. it seems to me that from the standpoint of the immediate security issues that are personnel has, and all of us, including you wanting them to be safe, our priorities are not aligned with what it is we are hoping to do for the outstanding foreign service officers. and i wish that we could just respond to that. >> sir, i appreciate the point you are making. in many ways on an everyday basis we are trying to address the immediate security concerns through programs like increased training. lessons that we learned from benghazi, like how do we increase safety awareness and
how we provide do we provide countermeasures to fire this as a weapon. and in those places where we can't get new facilities, we are doing security upgrades to the best that we can. but i think it is clear that while we are doing the immediate and short-term needs that we need to be addressing, we are also asking for the ability to address the long-term needs so that as we move forward in the future, we put ourselves overall in a better position. in 1997, our embassies in nairobi were rated as low threat posts. we did not know that we were going to be seeing the phenomenon of terrorism working outside of the small lilies post that we are mostly concerned with. today we know that global terrorism is a worldwide phenomenon.
we did not foresee the problems we face middle east. our best answer on a long-term basis is while we are addressing the short-term immediate heat that we have to for our personnel and their safety, it is also to address the long-term needs that we put ourselves overall in this position. when we look at our facilities from a vulnerability standpoint back in 2000, we looked added and said we need 175 new facilities. the facility and also does not have any setback or resistance. it provides a very low level of safety for our personnel. i hope to be able to replace this in countries like that as we go along for the future.
>> it is a combination of both. but certainly, our immediate issues come first. we set up a combined military team to look at our highest threat level post in the aftermath of benghazi. we have dedicated an immense amount of resources to upgrade this even further well will have on the high-threat list and we continue to do that. >> what about the training facility? i have received some calls from folks and other senators. training now takes place in facilities that are already built and i have not visited them personally. you can share with me her own experiences. but why would we go ahead at a time when we need capital to deal with some of the longer term needs that you're talking about.
why would we be expending so much money to build a new training facility and apparently those needs are being taken care of in another existing facility? >> thank you for that question, senator. this is a question that is very close to my heart. we are currently using a leased facility that is on weekends a racetrack facility in west virginia. we use it five days a week. we can train approximately 2500 foreign service officers a year. the types of training not for dh tsa agents like on myself but for regular service officers. we give them high speed training and driving the vehicles, we give them training in basic firearms training. we expose them to explosives so that the first time that they hear a bomb going off, they can
understand that if they have survived it, what their next responsibility ends. to deal with themselves and others. this level of training we have found through the years has definitely saved lives overseas and prepared our people to serve in the environments we are sending them. regretfully the 2300 people that i train per year does not come close and doesn't even meet the number of people that we have at our high-threat posts alone. we have a certain number of high-threat post where we can only give our people before our the four hour online course to say please take this course. so that the capacity of the current facility that we are leasing cannot meet our training needs. our long-term goal, given where we are putting people overseas is to train every single foreign service officer every five years on the types of hard skills security training that we
believe foreign service officers need and in many cases their adult family members as well in the current facility does not meet our requirements and doesn't even meet our highest threat level requirements and at some point it may not be available to us. we believe that that will give us the ability in addition to hardening our facilities, training or people before they go overseas.
>> you require people in the state department to execute this. >> i know we have had a situation. we had for personnel and for people that have been put on leave and are still being paid. for what it is worth, it does feel that there is a degree of a lack of accountability. i'm just wondering if you might address that also. we build great facilities. but if people don't execute them and there is not that accountability, people are in situations that they shouldn't be in. could you address that issue for us today? >> yes, sir. thank you for the question. i think that my first answer would be that bill miller is
sitting next to me and my coming back after four years at the united nations, there is nobody that takes its responsibility more seriously than we do. the people that we manage in the agents that we train, the engineers and the people that we have in diplomatic security are dedicated. they are ready to give their lives to protecting our people overseas. i understand that there are still questions about the four individuals. i was not here at the time. but i do understand that it is complex because there are sets
of rules and procedures within the foreign service. it is my clear understanding that this entire issue is at the secretary of state's level. but he is getting recommendations on how to deal with this and he will finally make the decision on what will be the outcome with the four people there. i will tell you that i have worked with many of these individuals very closely. these are people that have given their careers to diplomatic security as well and the security of the department and i have a great deal of admiration. so i think that all through the
years we have had multiple attacks in yemen and afghanistan and iraq, those people performed admirably and it is my hope that their entire career is not guided by one single action. so we will do whatever the responsibility calls for. >> i thank you. i would just say that i don't think anybody here is on a witch hunt. i could not pick these out of line out. i do think it is important for the situation, it is stated that these people made mistakes that shouldn't have been made i think the response and the secretary
of state was dealing with this quickly. because it has been a long time. but i think you and i look forward to working with you and the chairman. >> thank you, senator. because i take this obligation very seriously. at least to the extent that i can. i am not going to have anyone exposed and that risk as a result of inaction by the committee. so i am going to at times engage in a follow up so that we have a sequential record that makes the facts and sides. there are two things that senator corker said. i want to get a little bit of clarity, so i will talk about this. immediate needs versus long-term needs and he responded you are working on immediate needs. of course the immediately means
to the extent that you can mitigate this. because if you don't have a setback, you're not going to be able to mitigate that fully. so you have this and if you don't have a setback and you're talking about this, it's like, okay, this has limited capabilities. so when you say in the balance between what some may view as the long-term, which he described as hopefully getting to a point in which all of our locations are is best protected as we could envision today regardless of where they are located in the world, because we don't know where the next high risk posts will be in the movement of a terrorist activity will take place. then we will all regret that we didn't think that also meant that much, by way of example. an example. so when you say your mitigate
them. i would like the record to reflect this. what are you mitigating in the short term. what are you capable of mitigating in the short term if you have an embassy or other site that is not fully mitigated to the specification of what you and the congress have provided them with a secure location. >> what we can mitigate his first a function of what the analysis in terms of the threat and overall situation of the country tells us. in a place like oslo today, we have a full functioning staff and a fully functioning embassy despite the fact that we don't have a setback for a secure facility. the reason we can do that is so that we have excellent cooperation from the government and we do not have information that we are running a high risk
and we are working on everything every single day. but to give you an ey single da. but to give you an example, it is quite a robust facility. when the situation changed dramatically in cairo and when we saw specifically how this worked and how we had evacuated ordered departure, we have moved out all the families and all nonemergency personnel. these are the types of things we can do to mitigate threats where we don't have a facility that necessarily meets the highest level of standards. there are things we can do as far as blocking off streets.
>> is this to the extent that you can mitigate something in the immediate term? if we don't have all of the other elements that are in play for this fully secured facility. >> exactly, yes, sir. >> okay. that gives us a little balance as to what the media versus long-term beds. >> i read the recommendation number 23 that said that the
findings of unsatisfactory leadership performance in relation to the security incident under review should be part of department regulations. under the existing statutory authority there are limitations. what is the point you have to have in order to discipline someone i need to look at section 203 of the legislation that i promoted. one that i believe satisfies the recommendation in that regard, which would then give the secretary the authority to fire individuals who have exhibited unsatisfactory leadership and relationship to a security incident. do you believe that section would give the secretary that ability?
>> yes, sir, i do. i believe it's important to give that additional flexibility and i think that helps us. >> thank you for your input. >> thank you, mr. chairman. let me just concur with your observation. we have very important responsibilities. we appreciate the witnesses that are here. it is our responsibility to review the steps that have been taken under the authority and resources that you have. but we also have a responsibility to make sure that tools are available for embassy security. that is a responsibility and the appropriations committee has a responsibility with this and i want to applaud the chairman. i think that gives us a way to make sure that you have the adequate tools in order to manage security of our embassies and the chairman's follow-up questions underscored some of those issues. i thank you very much,
mr. chairman, for your leadership on this issue and also recognizing the dual responsibility that we have on our site and to make sure that the tools and resources are available. >> i have had the opportunity to visit many of our u.s. embassies. it's a common theme when you are able to talk frankly with the embassy personnel and there is always concerns about the facilities that we could be better. i know that you did the review several years ago in the list that was compiled several years ago and the progress we have made. i expect that this is updated and et cetera. but is it time for us to do another evaluation globally of our facilities, recognizing that circumstances have changed? i personally believe that we need to do a better job.
this is an important ally and friend. and i understand that it's not a high-risk high risk area. based on the security needs as well as the factors that are important. and many embassies around the world, the united states does not have the combination of space and efficiency and security that is ideal for us to carry out our mission. >> sir, i believe that that is an accurate statement. it is, in many cases more than just security. but certainly this is an overriding factor at this point. in many cases we don't have the space or facilities that we need. when we build new facilities the primary response is overseas building.
we have many other agencies as well it is a combination of these choices. we have another 75 or so buildings. >> yes, we have a way to give an updated and realistic inventory we are meeting the challenge is. i really do applaud secretary clinton for recognizing the importance to our national security of our diplomatic missions. they need to have the resources and able to be able to carry
that out in a safe manner and efficient manner. and i just think that we could use a better blueprint than one was developed fiber six or seven years ago. >> senator, i will take that back. the office would probably be willing to come up with any of your staff to give you the information you would like. >> i appreciate that. >> what the want of a second issue on security. that is the competence and support that we get from the local government. that is evaluated as part of the security mission that you have to undertake. can you just briefly outline how that is taken into effect. how those factors are taken into the equation on security needs.
>> i was beginning to feel a little bit like that. we are talking about these teams as we go about assessing the various missions, 19 missions until the and felt that we were almost horrible at that time. we have to roll them into this. we have to string together late if we are weak on one leg. that is our ability to be have
to be able to mitigate that by strengthening this. that includes the cadre to work with the host nation and political counterparts to ensure that they would've to their responsibilities, just as we do care for them in the united states. it is something that we try to address. we try to address it through other bilateral training programs at of the u.s. government provides to help to bolster capabilities and hopefully build up to the point where we can trust, as we do in most places, the ability to secure us. >> is making one observation, i would hope that we engage the political apparatus of our country.
can you uat is being implemented with the capacity with the local language? >> certainly, this applies primarily to the capacity for arabic language skills. the foreign service institute has been working diligently with the rest of the department to include the security to assess what the requirements are. we are giving those skills with the opportunity to acquire those skills for the special agents a chance in such a way that they would be able to work in an emergency situation. realizing it is a long-term process that allows them to converse proficiently in that process can be upwards of two years for someone like myself.
>> thank you, mr. chairman. >> i apologize if this has been discussed many times with regard to legislation that has been introduced. assuming that legislation were in place and implemented. would it have affected the outcome in benghazi simply because it wasn't embassy or even a conflict. would it have made a difference there in your opinion? >> benghazi was not a threat level that we should have reprioritize what we were doing
with our existing capabilities. i think the chairman for introducing this legislation and it will help us on a number of different fronts. but i'm not going to sit here and tell you that the tragedy and that ghazi could've been avoided had we had this legislation. i think that that was a question that we did not understand in a situation that we were in and perhaps we should've made a decision to evacuate that post earlier. but we very much appreciate this legislation and it will help us in many ways and it will strengthen our capability to stay in place where the threats are greater. but i'm not going to talk about benghazi on the lack of this legislation. >> benghazi was a particular situation given the makeup and the particular situation.
ifmy first hearing as a senator was the one with clinton. it was a memorable one. i'll never forget the first hearing. i reviewed the arb in advance of the hearing to prepare, and mr. chairman, i imagine you know this. there are so many recommendations you fix upon a couple. one was the recommendation about the expansion of the marine security guard program program. the second was the recommendation about training of our state department personnel. in the packet of materials we were given for the hearing, thrfsz a "new york times" graphic where there was a summary may 20th how far we are along in the -- and there's a spectrum in each
of these various recommends from basically not started to completed, and in each of the recommendations there's sort of a "new york times" assessment where we are. the marine security guard is lower than the midpoint. lowest one, the most not near not even started yet is the recommendation about to improve the training of employees heading to post and expand the number of post where the additional security training is required. you talk about the issue in response questioning from senator corker about the need for the training facility for state department employees. we have met about this previously, and the chairman's proposed legislation addresses this. just to give us some history for everyone here, the state department began trying to find the training facility to replace the racetrack that was used during the week about four years ago. they began this long before
benghazi, long before the arb. and there has been a four-year effort that considered 80 different site for the training facility, and it eventually dwindled down. some communities didn't want it. with a particular requirement largely to involve a facility that would be close to synergy with the marine security guard and others it dwindled down and there was a preference for expanding this program at guard pace fort picket. that was basically the performance that we were moving toward before benghazi.
in april there was another letter that suggested it was delayed largely because of an inquiry from the omb about whether or not we can maybe do this a half version or a knock off version at some other facility. i gather there's been some exploration at the existing facility in georgia that wouldn't have the synergy with the marine security guard program with the other intelligence agency which whom our department of state staff worked. i think the process moving forward before benghazi and the arb to require this training capacity is now after benghazi and after the arb being thrown in to a question mark status. it would be ironic, -- that's the wrong word. it would be tragic if a process that was moving toward better training optimizing training for secretary of states --
department of state staff before benghazi and the arb would be now slowed down, watered down, diluted after we know what we know as a result of those horrible incidents on september 11th, 2013. what i would like to ask, what i would like to ask you is from the state department's standpoint, is it still your professional belief that the site was identified by the department of state at fort pick set the most consistent with the desire to increase training and the consistent with the arb recommendation that was forward to the committee. >> thank you for your question. >> the answer is simple, yes, sir. we still believe that the site gives us the best ability to train the number of personnel that we need to train to
incorporate our partners in the various other u.s. government agencies that are critical to our training in to that training to build the synergy we are our own foreign service substitute. yes, sir, we still believe that is the best answer. >> mr. miller, from your standpoint? >> i can only echo what about it secretary star said. we have to have the sirn gi in order to develop the relationship with our training partner as well as the students going through. and we both can give you number use examples of examples opportunity that foreign affairses officers have had to participate in actual life saving events where they have been benefited from the training they had the racetrack that served us well throughout my career. we have do better. if we can do better we absolutely have top.
we are talking about people's lives. >> thank you. i have no other questions. >> senator barlow rays sew. it's critically important to me the accountability review board knead clear that didn't get the mission in benghazi that they needed to ensure their security. so i just want to make sure we're learning from those failures and implementing real reform. with regard to risk mitigation. i understand we must accept a certain amount of risk to operate in areas like benghazi. the accountability review board stated milk rate gracious involved two impartive. engagement and security. it requires wise leadership, intelligence, proper defense and downsizing indirect access, they say, even withdrawal. what are the factors that the democrat -- department of state whether a location is too dangerous to support a diplomatic presence. mr. miller? >> thank you, senator.
we look at three basic questions. the host nation's capability and willingness i said earlier. we look at the current threat stream. we my forward with the diplomatsic engagement. we have to assess the options which you addressed. >> okay. are there posts currently you identified as needing to be downsized or closed? >> i can point back to it which we evacuated late last fall. late december. we're constantly evacuating -- evaluating other posts as a good example as our u.s. embassy in cairo over the past month as they've gone through the large
disturbances not only in cairo but throughout the country. so it's a constant evaluative process we go through and assess then what our next steps may possibly be. >> can i ask about the inspector general's audit of june 30th came out in 2013. released the audit of compliance with physical and procedural security standard that select high-threat level post. i'm concerned it's been ten months since the terrorist attacks in benghazi. the inspector general found the high threat level posts are failing to comply with security standards. i don't know if you have seen the audit yet. can you explain to the committee why the problems are happening, and what the plan and timeline is for remedying these issues? >> i think it's important we point out the defenses from the -- differences from the office of the inspector general. i think it's important to note
the risk that i'm responsible of leading and supervisorring the management of the program. i don't believe they visited any posts. when they're referring to high-threat, that is a very often-used and not well defined term. so as they look at the various recommendations, it should be parsed very carefully when we look at the post for which i'm responsible. i will say that we are continuing to work with the oig to address their concerns. we want to ensure that our people do have the best possible protection, and we value the oig's perspective. but an diplomat security is working with them to find common ground. >> thank you for their clarification. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. let me thank both of our witnesses, not just for your testimony, but for the incredible service you are providing our country as you stream -- extremely difficult times.
obviously, these are very important responsibilities on the safety of our personnel. so we thank you very much. we also appreciate your willingness to work with this democratic national committee. there's been a lot been a lot of questions ask that i think will involve us working together to make sure we have safe facility and personnel in place. we have responsibility not only oversight and our partner and we look forward to working with you to protect the dedicated men and women who serve our nation and foreign posts around the world. with that, the committee will stand adjourned. [inaudible conversations] >> my understanding is that the u.s. special mission in benghazi was a temporary facility, and that the overseas security policy board standards for facilities apply to all facilities, including temporary facilities. in a report that the arb issued of state department noted that it would reissue this long
established policy to all posts by january of this year. do we know if that policy reissued? do you know if it was ? >> i believe it was january 23rd. >> okay. how are the overseas security policy boards standards enforced at temporary facilities? >> sir, when we move back in to a country. really where we're going experience temporary facilities. one of the thing we have to do is determine what our presence will be and have to determine what facilities are available and whether or not we can balance the need versus the safety. part of the process is looking at what facilities are available, what will cost to do those facilities, and whether or not we have the ability to do it. we are current will i not in somalia. we we send temporary duty
personnel to somalia. because we don't have a facility that we think could meet our requirement at the moment. i think that's the best judgment question give you. we are very vocal and clear when we say we don't have an answer that can meet the security requirements. we are concerned about places like do ma. we only allow temporary-duty travel in. we are working with closely with the u.n. we don't have a nailt -- nailt facility to meet our needs. we use the integrated planning cells to determine what we need to have. we have to make a determination whether we have the internal resources to meet the needs or have to come congress to supplement to do it. we have develop certain new tools to help us. one of the things we learned out of iraq where we had many, many people in trailers in many
places and take the trailers where we put sandbags around them. we put overhead cover and walls around them. we developed something called a trailer system which is a highly blast resistance bullet-proof trailer at the point that provides a high degree of overhead protection build in. we are trying to develop new tools that give us reasonably safe and secure accommodations and even officers in the temporary-type situations. >> let me go part b of the particular benghazi-typeset of circumstances. that is an instances where a facility is shared, or used principally by u.s. government agency other the department of state, how does the interagency process address security needs at that facility? who takes the lead? >> the individual agency will be responsible for upgrading the facility, but it's still
upgrading to the osp overseas security policy board standards. if they don't meet the standards they go through the same waiver and exception processes. >> very good. now, i want, for the record's purposes,. until now, correct me if i'm wrong, but the marine guard attachment to embassies was in essence for the security of sensitive and classified documents. is that correct? >> that is essentially correct, sir. the staffing level of we were putting in facilities was essentially to meet that requirement.
>> most people see the marine guard, i think even members of congress when they visited abroad and thought that somehow they were about protecting the embassy, the personnel, and whatever else including documents was in there. that wasn't the core focus. the core focus until a new recent agreement was to give the time should an embassy overrun for the purpose of being able to deal with classified documents. is that a fair statement? >> that's correct, sir. >> now as i understand that, the high threat post there's an additional mandate or responsibility that we have asked the marines to performance; is that correct? >> yes, sir. >> what would that be? >> we have renegotiated the them memorandum and clearly emphasized that our new mandate
is equal protection for our personnel and our facilities in our embassies while protecting classified information. sir, if i may. >> yes. >> even when we had the smaller numbers assigned to the detach. in many cases six or seven marine. the primary responsibility was protection of classified information. there wasn't anybody that understand as an extremist the job was to protect the people. we were not staffing with enough marines necessarily to take on that role. what we're working with the marine corps. is in particularly in the high-threat location to increase the numbers of marines at each of one of those posts so they are better capable of doing the defense portion as well. >> i appreciate you expounding upon that. it didn't suggest that marines will standby and see people
killed. certainly there was no staffing level to be able to accomplish that. particularly high-threat posts. >> is the new marine understanding that come together with the state department on high threat post or globally? the memorandum agreement is global. the reality is we are concentrating on our highest threat on increasing our marine staffing at those locations. >> okay. then finally, i want to get to host government capacity. they found in that in the libyan government's response to be profoundly lacking on the night of the attack. a it relies on the host government capacity as well as their will. those are two critically important. you have the will be now the the
capacity. have the capacity but not the will. they both need to be there. so as we look beyond libya, and we're looking now globally, how do you assess these variables? how do you quantify them how do these determinations go to your overall security assessment? is the provision we have included in the legislation, which deals with the question not of lowest cost, but the best cost for performance as well to give you the flexibility particularly in places where that will be critical to security a desire to flexibility . i know there are multiple questions in there. >> let me take the last part of that and turn bill on part of this. on the contracting, sir, we believe that it is critical and
we thank youv recognizing that situations and almost all of our posts are pretty different and certain cases where we don't have perhaps the level of support because of the willingness or capability from the host government. situations may arise where the idea of lowest cost technically acceptable contracting is not going give us the guard force that we think that we could get if we had another instrument to contract with. we want to thank you. we believe that adding this capability where we believe it increase significantly it give us a tool to do that, sir. i think it's an important step that allows us address some of the inherit capability where we don't necessarily have the level of support from our host government we would like.
>> how do you assess the host government's ability, willingness, what -- how to you quantify it? how do you make those determinations to factor in your overall security assessment? >> to some extent, it's a subjective call. but we quantify as much as we possibly can through our various partners with us at the embassy who help to assist the training that the host services have received. historically in many posts we have a relationship that gone back for a number of decades. question quantify then what our expectations should be and how well they can live up to the expectations. in some instances because of recent instability, the expectations has been nullified. it's matter of us in taking the opportunity, as i said in my opening statement go to extraordinary issues which are standard. in those instances of the best
value contracting gives us the opportunity to achieve a level of competence with our local guard forces we wouldn't necessarily be able to achieve with the host nation services. >> mr. chairman, if i may, i think we can quantify the capability pretty well by working closely with the defense colleague or intelligence colleague or our own security staff. we can see pretty well and make a pretty good determination of the capability of the host government. much more subjective is the question of what is the particular willingness at the time, and we are much more sensitive the entire department is to having a better analysis capability and having our political officers and ambassadors really weighing in on what is the particular host government desire to help us and particular time. there's certain places where we can have a great deal of willingness on a tuesday
afternoon and in some cases by friday afternoon it may not be there. i think it's part of the dill problem. it's part of our solution. our security personnel, bill, and i, and others to work closely with the regional bureaux and with our ambassadors. and -- >> i have one final question. it's on the question of intelligence, and it's use integration to your able. analysis. looking at changing events, which might indicate a different threat level that we may not have tradition -- in the new paradigm in which we live in. which unfortunately requires us to think outside the box. you know, the terrorists have to get -- we have to get right 100% of the time. that's a tough challenge. that's our challenge.
how are you integrating the use of intelligence in are you receiving the flow of information that is essential, i would think, for you to continue to make a analysis on in real time ongoing basis so you can adjust accordingly where you need to. >> yes, sir, the relationship across the spectrum of intelligence community and us has broadened and deepened. we have officers that from other agencies that are working with us at our desks and our offices now. the level of coordination that goes on in term of discussion of threats is deeper and wider and held both at the working level at the national security staff level. the coordination we have with our regional bureau is now --
every weekday morning, saturday and sunday if necessary we look at the threat that come in most recently. in the same meetings we have representative from the regional bureau of the department of state. we are linking up the political with the intelligence that is coming in. if i can say one thing, sir, one major strategic lesson that came out of benghazi. one of the observations of the arb was that there was no specific intelligence in benghazi to indicate there was a threat. and i think it -- you can lull yourself in to a position where there's no specific intelligence. you say we must be okay. i think one of the major changes that has happened we're much more aware of the larger atmospheric in these countries, the prelim, the social, what is going on in term of web activity, social networking.
trying to keep abreast what we see is going on in that country in addition to whether or not we have specific intelligence threats is a much deeper, much broader effort than we've had before as women. so i think both sides. it's the intelligence side that is deeper, broader, and more important to us. it's also keeping much more abreast behalf is really happening in that location and melding the two in to our decision making and what we do as a recommendation further in the department. >> and when you say that your use or access or universe of intelligence is deeper and wider. are you referring to the deeper and wider as post benghazi? >> yes. >> all right. with that, seeing no other member with the committee. the thank for the committee for the service and the men and women who serve under you in protecting our diplomat ises
aprocess. we have thanks of the committee. we look forward to a continuing engagement with you as we try to move it forward. the record will remain open to the close of
>> i am wondering if you have been briefed on the reason why embassies are going to be closed this sunday, and now there's a worldwide travel alert through the entire month of august. what is your understanding of the threat? have you been briefed? should americans be overly concern about security right now? >> the leadership of the house has been briefed on the subject. my staff was at that briefing, and they briefed me as to what the basis of it is. yes, we have been briefed. now that it's in the public domain that the embassies will be closed, and there's a travel alert for americans traveling abroad, there's some understanding of the seriousness of the threat. >> watch all of the minority leader's remarks from the briefing in the video library, go to c-span.org. >> i'm standing at the base of
the oprah pit, and they called it this after the fear of the gold mine of king solomon in the old testament, saying this was the mine, they claim this was a mine of biblical proportions, and they got it right because hundreds of millions of dollars came out of the ground beginning right here. >> it was remarkable because it was one was rich education gold and silver strikes in history. it was a huge area of gold and silver, and what made it remarkable is it took a good 20 years to excavate it. from 1889, there was big economies, and for 20 years, you could count on this place, and that never happened in the mining west where you had
incredible productivity, the bonanza, spanish term for a prosperous body and good time, and for a bo bonanza to last 20 years was incredible. >> learn more as booktv and american history tv look at the life of carson city, nevada, throughout the weekend, saturday noon eastern on c-span2-rbgs, and sunday at five on c-span3. >> the national governor's association kicked off the three day long summer meeting in milwaukee allowing governors from across the country to participate in a series of sessions focused on national and state issues. next, the opening press conference from today's event beginning with republican governor, scott walker, of wisconsin. >>ed good morning. welcome to milwaukee, wisconsin.
glad to have you here. thank you for joining us for the morning press conference. i'll give a brief welcome and then turn it over to the chair. he's our chair, joinedded today by governor mary fallon who is the vice chair from oklahoma, and will be the incoming chair on sunday, and two other fellow members of the executive committee, gary herbert, the governor from utah who hosted this annual event two years ago in salt lake city and park city, and governor from colorado who is looking good in a tie, i like that, but who actually had some good connections in wisconsin. he, in the previous life in the professional world opened up a few group hubs. we like that connection as well. we are bleezed to host the meeting of the national governor's association. we started two years ago with visit milwaukee, really being the imptous here locally.
at the time, we talked with the tourism department to bid on this meeting, visited milwaukee, and they put together a team, mja milwaukee, for this event, and we had rave reviews last night, and we had all the governors and participants over to the park, showed off what espn calls not just the bam park in all of major league baseball, but one of the best stadiums in all of professional sports. tonight, thankfully, the rain came in early this morning and will not stick around. tonight, a number of governors, including governor fallon, took lessons to ride with the harley ride. we will be hosting an event tonight for all the participants at the harley davidson museum, just a short zaps from here, and a number of us of us ride in with combat veterans to highlight the 110th and to have
fun tonight down there as well to show off another unique attraction to milwaukee and the state of wisconsin, and then on saturday, we'll be right down here on the lake front here in peer wisconsin showing off one of our unique assets with the lake front here in lake michigan and the great facilities from looking down the way at summer fest, world's largest music festival to the first art design in north america behind us at the art museum, and some of the great attractions we have here in the city of milwaukee, so we're pleased here in wisconsin, pleased to be hosting our fellow governors, spouses, their families, their staff, and those interested in the work, the bipartisan work of the national governor's association, pleased to host everyone in here and hopeful that in addition to everybody being here, these couple of days, that a number of spoke folks will be interested in coming back and holding their on conventions and conferences here in milwaukee and in the state of wisconsin, so we
appreciate y'all coming. with that, i'll turn it over to the chair of the national governor's negotiation. >> well, good morning, everybody. i want to thank governor walker for doing a great job. everybody had a very good time last night at the brewers' field, and we're looking forward to the rest of the weekend as well. i'm very pleased that i'm joined by governor fallon, who's been the vice chair of nja this last year. it's been wonderful to work with her and glad the governors have joined us as well. you know, washington may be gridlocked these days, but the governors are not, and we, you know, we have to grapple with the needs of our citizens, and figure out solutions to the key issues of the day, putting people to work, improving schools, health care, infrastructure, homeland security, all the issues these are the issues on the agenda for the weekend, and i want to give you a little bit of a snapshot
of the things that we are working on. one of the biggest challenges, of course, is around health care, and while all of the attention tends to be on the implementation of the affordable care act, actually, a lot of the most important work that's going on now is on innovation in the states figuring out how to transform the way we deliver and pay for health care, and there's really very exciting work going on in many states across the country, and one of the best parts of the nja meetings is the opportunity we have to learn from each other, and we're going to be doing exactly that, and to assist governors in navigating some of the complex health care issues, we recently announced the creation of two boards. one is what we call the health care stainability task force led by john, the governor of oregon, and by bill, the governor of tennessee, and it really focuses on some of the innovations at the state level that look at the resign of how we pay, deliver,
and pay for health care. the idea, of course, being to improve quality, reduce costs, and we believe there's actually some very good strategies out there to do that. the second group that we put together is the state health policy advisory board, and that really is to offer a broader and deeper perspective staffed by a number of experts in the field and really aimed at giving good advice to governors. we, as governors, believe in what we call flexible federalism, and that means that a strong, cooperative relationship between states and the federal government can solve problems at both levels, and that's really what we work on a lot, certainly, at the meeting that we have every february in washington, where we always get together with the president and his team as well as with members of congress. one of the things we're focused on there is the continuing to ask for flexibility in the work force investment act, and particularly, the 15% set aside to create jobs to spur economic
growth to help families grow their incomes and to get people back to work. we're also keenly focused on the role that a skilled work force plays in economic developments. you know, it used to be that if a company was going to expand, it was likely to happen in the united states, but these days i know i've taken a number of trade delegations around the world, and i know these other governors have as well, and whether it's israel, india, or south korea or china, really pretty much anywhere these days, it is stunning to see how many multinational companies are investing in putting big research and development facilities, manufacturing facilities, and the like in the other countries, and, again, 5 years ago, almost by necessity, these investments would have gone here in the united states or perhaps western europe. that's not the world that we live in anymore. the competition, in fact, is fierce. there's 3 billion people in the world looking for jobs, and there's 1.2 billion jobs available. we really are in this global war
for jobs. it means we're in a global war for talent because the jobs are going to go where the talent is, and we have to act accordingly. those issues will be a part of what we discuss this weekend. the governors urged congress to complete the long overdue reauthorization of the elementary and secondary education act. we stressed importance of the state led science, technology, engineering, and math education fund and any house and legislative package. at the same time while we focus on what happens in washington, many of us, if not all of us, have our own initiatives around stem education as well. what i value in the conferences is the opportunity that we have to learn from each other including around education. on the issue of homeland security, governors in conjunction with the counselor of governors continue to encourage full use of the national guards. cost effective approach to delivery. their high level of skill to
maintain critical capabilities for the federal government and for states while reducing the overall size and costs of our nation's military. additionally, states begin implementation of the nationwide public safety broadband network, an initiative that the nya was very involved in. we have to address the nation's water infrastructure needs earlier this year. they released recommendations for reauthorizing the water resources development act, which called for legislation that would lead to long term certainty and stability around the modernization of our water infrastructure, and, finally, in preparation for tax reform, there was a tax force led by the governor of kentucky and governor of pennsylvania released guiding principles on federal tax reform to focus on the interest exclues on mew municipal bonds and deductibility on state and local
taxes. the principles addressed the broader issue of ensuring the federal tax reform does not limit or preempt state authority over budget and revenue systems. you can say we've been very busy. there's a lot to be done as we continue to face fiscal challenges in the states, and after several years of slow recovery, the survey shows there is relief, but we're all challenged with providing resources in some of the critical areas that had to be cut during the recession, and we're challenged by some of the declining federal funds for state programs subject to sequestering and continue spending demands in direct response to the sluggishness of the economy like medicaid and higher ed in corrections. we can better address all of our economic challenges by, obviously, creating more economic opportunities for our people, and that's going to be a theme of many of the conversations this weekend, and as we discuss job creation, you know, every one of us wants to be the jobs governors, but we want to make sure we are
focusing on opportunities for all of our constituents, and so there's not many perks of being the chair of the nja as governor fallon is going to find out, but one of the gets to focus on an initiative to spotlight throughout the course of the year, and the initiative i worked on this year focuses on one segment of our population that's often been left out of the discussion, and that's people with disabilities. we have not made nearly enough progress, even with since the passage of the americans with disabilities act, more than two-thirds of working age americans with disabilities are outside of the labor force, and that's more than 10e million people we are not reaching in order to tap into their talents. this year's initiative was entitled "a better bottom line: employing people with disabilities," and this is the blue print to be released today. we use that phrase, "a better bottom line," because that's how we are focused. this is not about charity. one of the most powerful parts
of the conversation is to listen to business leader tell other business leaders they employee people with disabilities, not out of charity, but because it's in the best interest of their shareholders, and we got to raise awareness of how tapping into this talent pool of people with disabilities is so effective for businesses. we had more than 60 meetings and events with governors, other policymakers, business people, advocates, and the like, and i was particularly taken by a comment that the ceo of walgreen's made when he was in washington in february speaking to all governors, and he, again, emphasized, walgreen's is a great employer of people with disabilities, and they don't do so because it's a nice thing to do. they don't do so because it's charity. they do so because it's the right thing to do for their business, and so for over the last year, we have found ways that state governments and businesses can partner to bring more job opportunities to people with disabilities. we've been working to provide governors and other policymakers
with very specific tools that they can use to not only look at the environment in their states, but really come up with some solutions that are designed to support this possession of a pod that's really what led to the development of this, and in this blueprint are concrete examples of what governors and policymakers can do to advance employment opportunities in their states for people with disabilities. we intentionally wrote it as a blueprint to map out specific ideas, practical actions governors can take, and not just as a report to sit on a shelf somewhere. it covers five key areas. one is making -- employing people with disabilities part of the broader and overall work force strategy, not as a stand alone or act of charity, but really focused on integrating it with the overall work force development strategy. number two, finding and supporting more businesses who will hire and retain people with disabilities. the only way we can take this to
scale is if we get the business community to embrace this. good news is we have a lot of businesses who started down the path, and they have to share the stories with other businesses. number three, we have to make sure that states, ourselves, are model employers. it's better to go to a business saying you should consider this when we, ourselves do it in our states. number four, we have to do a better job of preening youth with disability to prepare them for a life of an expectation of employment and not for a life dependent on benefits. finally, make the best use of resources, obviously, state resources are typically limited, to ensure it's not just federal resources but foundation resources. we are making good strides in the front across the country, but we have a lot more to do, and i really look forward to the opportunity this week to go into more of the details with my fellow governors. with that, what i would like to
turn this over to governor fallon, the vice chair of the nja, governor of oklahoma, we are joined by governor abercrombie of hawaii, great to see you as well. great to see you. governor fallon is making comments, and then we'll turn it over to q&a, and the other governors can chime in as they see fit. with that, governor fall lone. >> thank you, governor markell, and what a beautiful place to be this morning, governor walker, absolutely stunning view today, so thank you for hosting us here, and governor markell, jack, we appreciate your work on behalf of the national governors' association, your chairmanship, you led us through a great year of productivity, working on many important issues for our nation, and it's been a great success, and we're glad to be able to be joined today by our fellow colleagues joining us here. thank you, all, for coming this
morning, and i know i certainly am going to take valuable lessons from you, jack, as we continue to move the nja along and have the opportunity this coming sunday, myself, and also the governor from colorado who will take over as the new vice chair when we have a change of leadership, and i want to take just a moment to thank governor walker and his wife for a wonderful weekend. we had a great time last night at brewers' stadium, and we still have some of our colleagues who went down the slide on the burlap sacks, and told me how fast it was. i did not try that. i had to be prepared to speak this morning, but i heard that it was a great time had at the baseball stadium, and, certainly, it was a beautiful stadium, absolutely remarkable. the food was great. i think everybody had hot dogs and french fries and brats and other things that maybe is not on the health diet, but it was fun to have that kind of food.
we are excited to be here in milwaukee, there's a tremendous agenda lined up with great speakers to talk about on important issues facing our nation, and we do have 5 very busy weekend ahead of us as outlined, with important topics, and certainly very appreciative of his work on those that are disabled here in america, and what we can do to help those who have challenges ahead of them and how we can integrate them better into our work force and improve our work force itself. as was mentioned, health care remains one of the top topics facing our governors across our nation. states are leading the effort in the area of health care to improve access to health care, certainly examining the quality of health care itself, cost con tapement, how to encourage our populations to take personal responsibility for their health, become educated on various health care issues, and it's
certainly one of the major cost drivers for our state budgets, and we certainly have a lot of federal legislation that is affecting our states and how we run our health care systems so we're going to hear a final report on that, i should say, on health care and have a special session about some of the recommendations that are health care tax force has made on stainability of costs itself, how we can deal with stainability of the health care system, to deal with cost containment. in our opening session, we're also going to have a session on health and homeland security in which we'll talk about providing for the health of our veterans. also helping provide better services for our veterans. we've done a tremendous amount of work with the nga on behalf the veterans, great best practices and examples of ways to help provide them jobs and certainly ensure that our veterans and their families are supported because of their
wonderful contributions that they have made to our nation and how it helps provide better access to benefits and services for them while they are protecting us, certainly, in our nation. our specked half of our session will deal with homeland security and preparedness. governors are certainly invested in making sure our citizens are sigh safe from any type of terrorist attacks. certainly, we have to deal with major disasters and other emergencies that arise within our various states and certainly across or borders. we also are going to take a look at our state efforts to develop and maintain our core capacities to prevent, to prepare, and to respond, and recover from any type of large scale emergencies that our states might be affected by. i know that in oklahoma, as you all have seen recently, back in may, we experienced some tremendous natural disasters that occurred when we had tornadoes that went through many of our different communities,
especially in moore, oklahoma, where we had loss of life. we had loss of facilities and homes and businesses and we've had other tragedies that have affected not only my state, but other states around the nation so we think it's very important for governors to be able to share their ideas, to share what they've been through with natural disasters and preparedness, and how to be able to coordinate better with our local, state, and federal entities as we come through these types of disasters, and, certainly, working with our private sector and our charities. we also think that it's important that we help our new governors, what we call our baby governors, our new governors, that come on line to be prepared on day one to have the ability to handle any type of natural disaster or type of emergency that might come into their administration. i know that when i first took office, my first very day of being sworn in as governor of
oxes, -- oklahoma, we had a major ice storm right at the time i was sworn in so even leading up to my time of having my inaugust ration at noon mandated by the constitution, i had an ice storm, and we had to decide whether to have the inauguration or not, whether we could keep the public safe during that time, and so it's certainly come to my mind that it's important for all governors to be prepared on day one for natural disasters. initially, we'll be working on education and work force issues as was mentioned, jobs, all very important to each of our states, each of our governors, talking about economic growth and job creation, and how we need to provide the best training possible to have the highly skilled educated work force to be able to give our educational institutions the tools that they need so that they can be successful and provide the type of work force that our businesses not only require, but the businesses demand. education work force committee
will convene to look at innovations in the work force with training and employment services to help create jobs and certainly help create better incomes for our families, and then tomorrow, we're going to move into other issues like infrastructure and transportation. the economic and development commerce committee and the natural resources committee will hold a joint session on the state of america's infrastructure. ..